Arcanamach (3.5e Class)

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Status: Completed. May by lacking a bit of flavor, but will hopefully get back to that.
Editing: Constructive edits welcome


Arcanamachs are arcane fighters, more adept in dexterous combat than up front and brutal melees, like their Duskblade or Spellsword cousins. Arcanamachs prefer to gain any advantages they can, and follow the combat up with quick decisive strikes, focusing down enemies in the order they find most threatening (usually other spellcasters, followed by bruiser fighters, then anyone else who still opposes them after). Also unlike most martial arcanists, they do not use any evocation or conjuration to enhance their combat. Instead they rely on the (slightly) more passive skills to amplify their unique combat styles. Dipping into the schools of Abjuration, Divination, Illusion and Transmutation, they rely on using the arcane arts to affect the outcome of their battles in much more subtle ways.

Making an Arcanamach[edit]

Arcanamachs are a class that is best suited when other major roles are filled. They can take the place of a dedicated arcane caster, but without the evocation and conjuration spells, they may seem a bit more lacking. They have the skillset to be a dedicated skillmonkey, but will hardly every receive as many skill points as a rogue. And they have the ability to stand toe to toe in some melee combats, but can't dish out or take as much damage as the mighty Crusader or Warblade. An Arcanamach is best suited to let each other dedicated member perform his or her role, and to support them in whichever ways (s)he can, whether that be performing a difficult skill check, aiding the other caster in buffing party members, or getting up close and personal with enemy mages, in a concentrated effort to take them down before they dish out too much hassle..

Abilities: Arcanamachs rely heavily on Dexterity and Charisma. Their spells available to cast and spell DCs all rely on their charisma, and although strength can boost melee proficiency, dropping Dexterity could give a hit to skills that would take a turn for the worst. A nimble Arcanamach with a high Dexterity and weapon finesse is one of the scariest opponents imaginable.

Races: Any race can be well suited to be an Arcanamach, provided they have the willpower to seek out the lore required to becoming one. Humans and their adventurous tendencies are the most common, and sometimes deadly Arcanamachs. The Elves' affinity for all things magic and nimble, dance-like fighting styles also make them a prime candidate. Dwarven martial proficiency may fit some Arcanamachs, but their general dislike of arcane arts and fondness of more strength relied combat causes them to be few and far between.

Alignment: An Arcanamach can be of any alignment. Good Arcanamachs rely on their prowess to take up positions as bodyguards to high nobility or accompany champions of good on quests of valor. Neutral Arcanamachs may travel the lands, seeking balance in all they find, whether it be in themselves or the areas surrounding them. Evil Arcanamachs more often than not become assassins, taking on contracts to kill those marked who would be otherwise unable to be reached by most normal hitmen. Lawful ones swear loyalty to a master and serve faithfully, and Chaotic roam the lands on their own seeking thrill and adventure. If there were any restricting factors on the Arcanamach, alignment is the furthest from it.

Starting Gold: 5d4 x 10 (125gp).

Starting Age: Moderate.

Table: The Arcanamach

Hit Die: d8

Level Base
Attack Bonus
Saving Throws Special Spells per Day
Fort Ref Will 0 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th
1st +0 +0 +2 +2 Dispelling Strike 1/ Day 5 3
2nd +1 +0 +3 +3 Combat Casting 6 4
3rd +2 +1 +3 +3 Eschew Materials 6 5
4th +3 +1 +4 +4 Ignore Spell Failure Change 5% 6 6 3
5th +3 +1 +4 +4 Dispelling Strike 2/ Day 6 6 4
6th +4 +2 +5 +5 Extended Spell Strength 6 6 5 3
7th +5 +2 +5 +5 Iron Will 6 6 6 4
8th +6/+1 +2 +6 +6 Ignore Spell Failure Chance 10% 6 6 6 5 3
9th +6/+1 +3 +6 +6 Tenacious Spells 6 6 6 6 4
10th +7/+2 +3 +7 +7 Dispelling Strike 3/ Day 6 6 6 6 5 3
11th +8/+3 +3 +7 +7 - 6 6 6 6 6 4
12th +9/+4 +4 +8 +8 Ignore Spell Failure Chance 15% 6 6 6 6 6 5 3
13th +9/+4 +4 +8 +8 Mettle 6 6 6 6 6 6 4
14th +10/+5 +4 +9 +9 - 6 6 6 6 6 6 5 3
15th +11/+6/+1 +5 +9 +9 Dispelling Strike 4/ Day 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 4
16th +12/+7/+2 +5 +10 +10 Ignore Spell Failure Chance 20% 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 5 3
17th +12/+7/+2 +5 +10 +10 - 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 4
18th +13/+8/+3 +6 +11 +11 Perfect Mage Slayer 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 5 3
19th +14/+9/+4 +6 +11 +11 - 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 4
20th +15/+10/+5 +6 +12 +12 Ignore Spell Failure Chance 25%, Dispelling Strike 5/ Day 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6

Class Skills 4 + Int modifier per level, ×4 at 1st level)
Bluff (Cha), Climb (Str), Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Disguise (Cha), Escape Artist (Dex), Hide (Dex), Jump (Str), Knowledge (arcana) (Int), Knowledge (history) (Int), Knowledge (the planes) (Int), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Profession (Wis), Search (Int), Spellcraft (Int), Spot (Wis), Swim (Str), Tumble (Dex), and Use Rope (Dex) .

Class Features[edit]

Arcanamachs are martial arcanists who excel at dexterous combat, and schools of magic use to gain the upper hand in a fight. All of the following are class features of the Archanist.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Arcanamachs are proficient with all simple and martial weapons, and with light and medium armors, and shields (although not tower shields). Alternatively, an Arcanamach may choose to be proficient with all simple weapons and select two exotic weapons instead.

Spells: Arcanamachs gain the ability to cast spells as a Sorcerer would, derived from the Sorcerer/Wizard spell list, but on a more specified scale. To cast a spell, the Arcanamach must have a Charisma score of at least 10 + the spell's level. Bonus spells are based on Charisma, and the saving throws have a DC of 10 + spell level + his/her Cha modifier. The Arcanamach may only select spells of the Abjuration, Divination, Illusion and Transmutation schools. (S)He casts spells exactly as a Sorcerer would, and has the ability to replace spells a known spell for a new one at every even class level, starting at 3rd.

Table: Arcanamach Spells Known
Level Spells Known
0 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th
1st 4 2
2nd 5 2
3rd 5 3 -
4th 6 3 1
5th 7 4 2 -
6th 7 4 2 1
7th 7 5 3 2
8th 8 5 3 2 1
9th 8 5 4 3 2
10th 9 5 4 3 2 1
11th 9 5 5 4 3 2
12th 9 5 5 4 3 2 1
13th 9 5 5 4 4 3 2
14th 9 5 5 4 4 3 2 1
15th 9 5 5 4 4 4 3 2
16th 9 5 5 4 4 4 3 2 1
17th 9 5 5 4 4 4 3 3 2
18th 9 5 5 4 4 4 3 3 2 1
19th 9 5 5 4 4 4 3 3 3 2
20th 9 5 5 4 4 4 3 3 3 3

Dispelling Strike: Once per day, an Arcanamach can attempt to strike the magic out of his/her foe with a successful melee attack. The attack deals normal damage, and his/her victim is subject to a targeted greater dispel magic, as the spell. The Arcanamach's dispel check is 1d20 + class level + 6. If the Arcanamach's target has no spells or effects to be dispelled, the dispelling strike has no effect, but the use is used up for the day. The Arcanamach is able to use this ability once more per day at 5th level, and every 5 levels after.
Combat Casting: The Arcanamach's martial proficiency in arcane combat allows him/her to cast better while locked in melee combat. (S)He gainst Combat Casting as a bonus feat.
Eschew Materials: The Arcanamachs knows that choosing between wielding a spell and materials, and wielding a sword just is not practical. (S)He gains Eschew Materials as a bonus feat.
Ignore Spell Failure Chance: The Arcanamach's blend of swordplay and arcane prowess result in his/her ability to begin casting more proficiently while wearing armor or using shields. At 4th level, the Arcanamach ignores 5% of spell failure chance from any armor or shield (s)he wears. This reduction increases to 10% at 8th level, and increases by 5% every 4 levels thereafter.
Extended Spellstrength: At 6th level, the Arcanamach is able to better hold the duration of his self-targeted spells during combat. Any spell the Arcanamach that has his/herself as a target, the duration is doubled as if affected by the Extend Spell feat. The spell is still cast at its normal level, and any spell that affects multiple targets still affects each one, but only the Arcanamach is affected by the extended duration. Spells with no listed target are not affected by this ability. Tenacious Spells: As the Arcanamach grows in experience, (s)he begins to learn how to better apply his/her spells to foes, and keep them in place for the duration (s)he needs them. The DC to dispel the character's arcanamach spells is increased by 6.
Mettle: Constant combat against enemy magi has increased the Arcanamach's resistance to magical attacks. At 13th level, if the Arcanamach succeeds on a Fortitude or Will save against a spell that would normally produce a lesser effect on a successful save, instead (s)he ignores the effect. Mettle does not apply while unconscious or sleeping.
Perfect Mage Slayer: The Arcanamach has become a master at hunting and combating mages, whether using sword or his/her own spells. (S)He gains the benefits of the Mage Slayer feat, but does not suffer the -4 caster level penalty.

Epic Arcanamach[edit]

{{#anc:Table: The Epic Arcanamach Hit Die: d8
Level Special
24th Ignore Spell Failure Chance 30%
25th Dispelling Strike 6/ Day
28th Ignore Spell Failure Chance 35%
30th Dispelling Strike 7/ Day

4 + Int modifier skill points per level.

Ignore Spell Failure Chance/Dispelling Strike: These abilities continue to increase at the same by level progression as the base class. (Note: Jumping up to heavy armor at these levels with the increase spell failure chance reduction may sound like a blast, but remember; the Arcanamach is primarily a dexterous, quick and nimble fighter, relying more on darting about the battlefield and striking accurately, than wielding heavy plate armor and a massive shield. Leave that to the Clerics.)

Bonus Feats: The epic Arcanamach gains a bonus feat (selected from the list of epic Arcanamach bonus feats) every 3 levels after 20th All prerequisites must be met.

Epic Arcanamach Bonus Feat List: Any epic metamagic feats, Augmented Alchemy, Blinding Speed, Any craft feats, Dexterous Fortitude, Dexterous Will, Dire Charge, Energy Resistance, Epic Dodge, Epic Fortitude, Epic Prowess, Epic Reflexes, Epic Reputation, Epic Skill Focus, Epic Speed, Epic Spell Focus, Epic Spell Penetration, Epic Spellcasting, Epic Weapon Focus, Epic Will, Extended Life Span, Familiar Spell, Fast Healing, Great Charisma, Great Constitution, Great Dexterity, Great Intelligence, Great Strength, Great Wisdom, Ignore Material Components, Improved Combat Casting, Improved Combat Reflexes, Improved Darkvision, Improved Low-Light Vision, Improved Metamagic, Improved Spell Capacity, Improved Spell Resistance, Improved Whirlwind Attack, Legendary Climber, Master Staff, Master Wand, Multispell, Penetrate Damage Reduction, Perfect Health, Perfect Two-Weapon Fighting, Polyglot, Self-Concealment, Spell Knowledge, Spell Opportunity, Spell Stowaway, Spellcasting Harrier, Spontaneous Spell, Superior Initiative, Tenacious Magic, Two-Weapon Rend.

Campaign Information[edit]

Playing an Arcanamach[edit]

Religion: Religion can very greatly between Arcanamachs. Some feel their gift and talent is divine, while other just realize they have a gift for both the arcane and combat.

Other Classes: Arcanamachs typically get along with any other class in the group. Their likeness is dependent more on alignment and action than path of devotion. Arcanamachs are likely to get along with rogues who share similar personalities to theirs, as they respect the Rogue's ability to adapt to situations and use their They respect and Fighters, Swashbucklers, and the like for their ability to hold their own in a fight. The common Arcanamach also has a trend of befriending other spellcasters, relishing the company of someone as (usually) intellectually capable as themselves, and sometimes initiating and enjoying small quarrels with their arcane peers.

Combat: Arcanamachs have an innate tendency to seek out and focus down enemy spellcasters, especially when fighting a large group. An Arcanamach will tend to use his/her magic and quick agility to find his/her way behind enemy front lines, where he does everything in his/her power to shut down and spellcasters (s)he can find, leaving the front line fighters in his/her party to deal with any cohorts. After any mages have been slain, the Arcanamach will turn to face the back of the enemy, landing strikes on any enemies (s)he can flank, using remaining spells to aid allies and disrupt enemies.

Advancement: As an Arcanamach, you are part caster, part martial fighter, and part skill specialist. While you do not excel in any of these, selecting feats that add on to each will make you very versatile, which may be more effective than trying to max out one aspect. One good idea is to pick feats such as Combat Reflexes and Combat Casting, to gain free attacks of opportunity against enemies who approach you, then being more proficient at disrupting them with your spells once they reach melee range. This is only one option however, as a class as versatile as the Arcanamach contains hundreds of feat combinations. Unlike feats, when looking at prestige classes, look for those that will emphasize your style of play. For example, a casting-heavy Arcanamach may be prone to taking levels of Abjurant Champion, whereas a more stealth focused would choose Mountebank.

Arcanamachs in the World[edit]

Arcanamachs are not as common as many other classes in the world. The few that are on a payroll are almost exclusively assassins or bodyguard, fetching a fat purse for their unique and impressive talents. Those who are not held down by a paycheck are often adventurous travelers, seeking pay in the form of odd jobs most common people cannot handle without a broad array of skills, such as the Arcanamachs possess.

Daily Life: Arcanamachs are either content to carry out their jobs they're given, traveling the world in search of adventures, or traveling the libraries in search of lore. Whatever they come across, they are certain they know how to handle, which leads to many Arcanamachs pursuing many outrageously different lifestyles, even if they learned their skills from the same cultural texts.

NPC Reactions: NPCs are ususally unlikely to think much of an Arcanamach. They usually appear to be your average rogue, mage, or sometimes spellsword. If someone has studied the Arcanamachs before however, they would most likely be awed by their legendary presence, and realize better than to confront them in a one on one engagement.

Arcanamach Lore[edit]

Characters with ranks in Knowledge (history) can research Arcanamachs to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.

Knowledge (history)
DC Result
5 Arcanamachs blend arcane magic and martial proficiency.
10 Arcanamachs are often hired as bodyguards or assassins, and are very rare and expensive companions.
15 Arcanamachs employ four specific schools of magic, a wide array of weaponry, and agility to combat foes.
20 The Arcanamachs are the product of years of studying techniques, tactics, and teachings from ancient, forgotten cultures.

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